A few minutes ago I went to see for myself what all the fuss was about regarding Bill Clinton's interview last Sunday with Chris Wallace on Fox News. I had seen a few selected excerpts, and I had read that Clinton had finally stood up and blasted both Bush and Fox, and I wanted to see the whole thing for myself.
But when I went to YouTube.com to see it, I got this notice: "This video has been removed at the request of copyright owner Fox News Network, LLC because its content was used without permission."
What a lame cop-out by Fox News! This Neo-Conservative/Bush-Whitehouse mouthpiece, pretending to be a fair and objective news source, is apparently so afraid that this video will make them look foolish, that they are willing to suppress the news in order to keep the truth from being widely revealed!
The Copyright Laws have a specific exemption for high-value news stories such as this:
"Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair
use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in
copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that
section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting,
teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use),
scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright." - from United States Code 17:107
Yes, Fox could claim that this use of their material was not "Fair Use" because it was too extensive. But we could argue that it is necessary to see the whole interview in order to fully understand it, and that this necessity gives us the right of Fair Use in this important and controversial case, for "criticism and comment," in the Public Interest.
But even if Fox News is correct in their infringement claim, they can still make it legal to see, by granting their permission.
So here is my challenge to Fox News: Please give permission for this video to be seen, or else explain why you are violating the Public's legitimate rights of "criticism and comment," by hiding behind the Copyright laws.
Continuing along this same line of reasoning, I think that one of the very first things the Democrats should do after retaking control of Congress
is to re-instate the "Fairness Doctrine" in news broadcasting.
The Fairness Doctrine is a former policy of the United States's Federal Communications Commission. It required broadcast licensees to present controversial issues of public importance, and to present such issues in an honest, equal and balanced manner.
The Republican-controlled Federal Communications repealed most of the Fairness doctrine in 1987.
The United States Supreme Court had previously upheld the Constitutionality of the Fairness Doctrine in saying, "A license permits broadcasting, but the licensee has no constitutional right to be the one who holds the license or to monopolize a...frequency to the exclusion of his fellow citizens. There is nothing in the First Amendment which prevents the Government from requiring a licensee to share his frequency with others.... It is the right of the viewers and listeners, not the right of the broadcasters, which is paramount." - U.S. Supreme Court, upholding the constitutionality of the Fairness Doctrine in Red Lion Broadcasting Co. v. FCC, 1969.
Blessings to you. May God help us all.
UPDATE - September 27, 20006
Yesterday afternoon, Fox News apparently changed its mind about suppressing the videos of the interview posted on YouTube.com, and granted permission for them to be viewed. See them here => http://youtube.com/results?search_query=clinton+wallace&search=search